Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Blank Film

Today she was in tears in the photo shop when she looked at her 120 film from the haunted basement (in the Peace Park Rest House where one man survived) and saw that 8 of the 10 exposures were blank. She must have left the lens cap on which makes her feel dumb and inadequate. (Why do cameras allow you to take pictures with the lens cap still on?) Luckily, there was another roll - all good - and she did shoot with her digital Nikon too and made rubbings of the basement. Still, she will return on Monday with her tripod and more film. She walked down the Rijo-Dori crying in the blasting sun under her umbrella for shade and privacy. She made another rubbing of the old bank vault and the A-bombed tree at the Rio Sanyo museum. Then she took the tram to pick up her x-ray film. Most of it is blank, practically all of it. There are some marks on a few sheets and she will print through them when she gets home. Her emotions are high and volatile - relieved and happy for Kahori and Mari and everyone else working at the Peace Museum and living in Hiroshima that these objects are "safe", but disappointed for her art, as if she failed. She tried to hold onto what she tells her students, "your attempts are never failures, but always research." Already she is planning to come back with a lead box and proper exposure equipment and proper x-ray film. The anti-nuclear, anti-radiation, anti-bomb, anti-war message would be stronger if she could get this to work.
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